Mukhtar Ansari gets life term in a 32-year-old murder case

Special Judge (MP-MLA Court) Avnish Gautam sentenced the mafia don to life imprisonment with Rs 1 lakh fine for the murder of Awadhesh Rai, elder brother of Congress leader Ajay Rai in 1991.

Mukhtar Ansari gets life term in a 32-year-old murder case

Mukhtar Ansari (Photo: Twitter)

Jailed mafia don Mukhtar Ansari has been sentenced to life imprisonment by the Special MP-MLA court here on Monday in a murder case that dates back to 32 years.

Special Judge (MP-MLA Court) Avnish Gautam convicted Mukhtar Ansari under Section 302 of the IPC and pronounced the sentence of life imprisonment with Rs 1 lakh fine for the murder of Awadhesh Rai, elder brother of Congress leader Ajay Rai, in Varanasi 1991.

In the last one year, Mukhtar Ansari has been sentenced in four cases. But this was the first conviction where he has been sentenced to life imprisonment.


Mukhtar, who is presently in Banda jail, appeared for hearing in the case through video conferencing.

According to the prosecution, two eyewitnesses of the incident testified in the case.

Only Mukhtar Ansari’s case was going on in the MP-MLA court, while the cases of the rest of the accused are pending in the district court of Prayagraj.

Awadhesh Rai was a former minister and several times MLA of Pindra and now was the elder brother of Congress provincial president Ajay Rai.

On August 3, 1991, Congress leader Awadhesh Rai, living in Lahurabir area of Chetganj police station area of Varanasi, was standing outside the house with his brother Ajay Rai in the morning when miscreants who came from a van suddenly opened fire at them. Awadhesh Rai, whose body was riddled with bullets, was declared dead in the hospital where he was rushed to after the incident. The entire Purvanchal was horrified by the incident.

Former MLA Ajay Rai made Mukhtar Ansari the main accused in this case. Along with him, Bhim Singh, Kamlesh Singh and former MLAs Abdul Kalam and Rakesh were named in the murder case.

Two accused in the Awadhesh Rai murder case, Kamlesh Singh and former MLA Abdul Kalam, died during the trial. The other two accused in the case are Rakesh and Bhim Singh. The hearing in the case was earlier going on in the ADJ Court of Vanarasi. During the hearing on November 23, 2007, a bomb blast took place a few steps away from the court. Accused Rakesh took refuge in the high court citing security.

After this, the hearing of the case was to be stayed for a long time. The hearing against Mukhtar Ansari resumed after the formation of special court of MP-MLA in Varanasi. The files of Rakesh Justice and Bhim Singh are still pending in Prayagraj.

This is probably the first episode of hearing on the basis of photostat file in a case like murder. After this, the matter went to the high court. But, after a long legal process, the hearing was completed in the court here. After the arguments from both the sides were over, the court had reserved the file for the verdict on June 5.

During the hearing, it was found in June 2022 that the original case diary itself was missing. The case diaries were searched out from Varanasi to Prayagraj. However, the original case diary could not be found. Police had registered a case in this matter.

It was believed that Mukhtar Ansari, using his influence, took away the original case diary to derail the trial. Later, photostat case diary was used.

Main complainant and Congress leader Ajay Rai welcomed the decision of the MP-MLA court on Monday. He said he had been fighting for more than three decades against those who killed his elder brother.

“We never bowed before the mafia’s money and muscle power. I had full faith in the judicial system,” Ajay Rai said.